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Pres­ident-elect Donald J. Trump arrives with U.S. Pres­ident Barack Obama at the Capitol for the 58th Pres­i­dential Inau­gu­ration in Wash­ington, D.C., Jan. 20, 2017. More than 5,000 mil­itary members from across all branches of the armed forces of the United States, including reserve and National Guard com­po­nents, pro­vided cer­e­monial support and Defense Support of Civil Author­ities during the inau­gural period. (DoD photo by U.S. Air Force Staff Sgt. Mar­i­anique Santos)

Dreamers deserve better than DACA.

Pres­ident Donald Trump’s decision to rescind Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) restores rule of law to America’s immi­gration system, but Con­gress must pass leg­is­lation to give Dreamers — illegal aliens who came to America as children — cit­i­zenship.

Pres­ident Obama created DACA in 2012 after Con­gress refused to pass the DREAM Act, which would have given Dreamers legal status and a path to cit­i­zenship. He claimed DACA would allow law-enforcement officers to pri­or­itize high-risk illegal immi­grants for depor­tation. The Department of Homeland Security agreed, saying resources were too scarce to enforce all immi­gration laws.

While Obama tried to pursue the morally better option, he broke the law. It’s good policy to focus on border security and dan­gerous illegal immi­grants, but the exec­utive branch does not have authority to grant deferred depor­tation status.

“This notion that somehow I can just change the laws uni­lat­erally is just not true,” Obama said in 2011. “There are laws on the books that I have to enforce. I think that there’s been a great dis­service done to the cause of getting the DREAM Act passed…by per­pe­trating the notion that by myself I can go and do these things.”

Obama under­stood his limited Con­sti­tu­tional authority, but he chose to ignore it.

By ter­mi­nating DACA, Trump has reaf­firmed his com­mitment to enforce the law and to handle Dreamers more respect­fully than his pre­de­cessor.

DACA treated innocent children like crim­inals by putting them in a legal limbo. Since its pro­tec­tions lasted for only two-year periods, Dreamers lived with the looming threat of depor­tation.

It gave Dreamers neither per­manent legal status nor a path to cit­i­zenship, but only a tem­porary reprieve. Because they are not legal res­i­dents they do not qualify for federal aid pro­grams, such as tuition assis­tance.

This legal quagmire left Dreamers’ rights unsettle. In Michigan, for example, the Sec­retary of State Ruth Johnson ordered that Dreamers not receive driver’s licenses for five months. The same problem occurred in Arizona, Nebraska, and North Car­olina.

Although Dreamers did not come to the United States by their volition, neither did U.S. cit­izens consent to their arrival. So, Amer­icans have the right to ask for their removal.

Yet they should not. Instead, Amer­icans should appre­ciate the pos­itive eco­nomic ben­efits of the 800,000 Dreamers and invite them to become cit­izens.

In a Sept. 5 speech, Attorney General Jeff Ses­sions said Dreamers have harmed cit­izens of the United States: “It also denied jobs to hun­dreds of thou­sands of Amer­icans by allowing those same jobs to go to illegal aliens.”

There aren’t a fixed number of jobs in the United States. Immi­grants, in fact, create more jobs than their native-born coun­ter­parts, espe­cially in high-skilled indus­tries. In 2010, immi­grants and their children founded 40 percent of Fortune 500 com­panies, according to the Kauffman Foun­dation. These com­panies employ countless numbers of native-born workers.

Immi­grants also con­tribute more to the gov­ernment through taxes, on average, than they receive in ben­efits, according to the Foun­dation for Eco­nomic Edu­cation. Dreamers are among the top net con­trib­utors because they have attained higher average levels of edu­cation than other immi­grants.

Ses­sions is correct, however, in warning about giving cit­i­zenship to all minors who illegaly cross the border.

“The effect of this uni­lateral exec­utive amnesty, among other things, con­tributed to a surge of unac­com­panied minors on the southern border that yielded ter­rible human­i­tarian con­se­quences,” he said.

If children come to the country with their parents, then they should be deported with them, so fam­ilies are not sep­a­rated. Con­gress should also ensure all future immi­gration is legal.

Con­gres­sional Repub­licans should give Dreamers legal status in exchange for increased border security funding and mod­ern­ization of enforcement tools.

But unac­com­panied minors inevitably will come to the country, and the U.S. should have a policy made clear in law, not exec­utive authority.

The United States has mis­treated Dreamers for too long. Con­gress must invite them to become cit­izens — without fines and without delay.